Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema delivered a New Year’s message to his followers on Tuesday by way of a YouTube video that mainly sees the leader of the red berets call on his followers to behave responsibly during the festivities.
“We call upon all of you who are travelling to be safe, to not speed, to not drink and drive,” he said.
“When you drink and drive you are already intending to kill someone on the road.”
Malema called on police and traffic officers to deal with those who broke the law “decisively”, and gave people a list of behaviours to avoid.
“Do not drink and drive, do not use the cellphone, be a responsible citizen,” as a way of showing that “you love yourself”, Malema said.
He called on adults not to neglect their young ones as there “are perpetrators out there” and called on the youth “to stay away from drugs and if you drink, please drink responsibly”.
He called on young people who plan to “engage in sexual activities, [to] do so in a safe manner” and on those who are not yet ready, to “abstain”.
“We don’t want you to die out of being irresponsible. We want you to live long to realise economic freedom in our lifetime,” he said.
Malema highlighted his party’s causes for next year.
“We don’t want to blame it on our friends when they can’t help us next year out of acting in an irresponsible manner,” he said.
He warned those who chose to ignore his message.
“Next year is going to be a crisis for you and your family and you will be irritating us with social media statuses which say ‘when days are dark, friends are few’. When it was you, out off dancing to music and festivities, you acted in a manner that is unacceptable.
“Remember January is still coming, you have to pay the rent, you have to pay the fees. Have that at the back of your mind as you go,” he said.
Like President Cyril Ramaphosa in his New Year’s address, Malema also used his address to tackle the issue of violence against women and children.
He described SA as “a country in war with itself, particularly against the women, the girl child and all the vulnerables.
“We must make sure that in 2020 we find a solution against women abuse and against child abuse. This solution must come from men. It is a problem that is created by men and a problem that can be solved by men. Men should find a practical long-lasting solution against women and child abuse in 2020.
“Let 2020 be the year of the woman and the girl child,” he added, saying he hoped 2020 would be the year we “reduce rape, femicide and all violence against women”.
(Compiled by Daniel Friedman)